Me, My Friends, And Everyone

Day sixty-three. I decided to write this amongst friends, hoping maybe they would have some effect on how I write an entry. The interesting thing is all I can think about at this very moment is data. What information should I record about this transaction? How much I have had to drink? What I ate? What I am wearing? Am I high? Who did I see today? Who is around me as I write? What time is it? (Technically, that is saved as of the last time I saved the document, but that is often not accurate as to the time I actually wrote the entry.) My friends make me think of data. I love thinking about where they are in their lives, where they are going, and how far they have gotten since we last saw each other.

Intermission: I just played Super Smash Bros. Brawl and lost in a match as Lucas.

Today, I got to explain a little bit more about myself to my friends. Sometimes, I wonder how much sticks. I was with my two most attentive friends today. Attentive in the sense that they really pay attention when you talk. I mean you can tell by their face that they are thinking about what you are saying in conjunction with their own, trying to process their response. Some of my friends tend to gloss over their eyes when they are listening. I am one of these people as well. When you are unconvinced of a person’s motive to make whatever change or idea concrete within their mind a truth, you tend to stop listening and create a response of support that is lacking full confidence, though you may wish the best for them.

My girlfriend often is astonished by my choice in company, but I tend to gauge people worthy of my attention if they fall somewhere within a spectrum of trustworthiness and amusing, each respectively their own scale. They are friend worth if they are either of the two, with amusing being the more important of the two qualities. Trustworthy people are few and far, however, you should take the amusing while you can because they may be even rarer.

Coffee and Cherry Pie

Day fifty-two. I returned from my vacation completely relieved. It was a very stressful trip, and could hardly be called a vacation on some fronts, but like every trip, it had is peaks and valleys. The valleys were deep and wide. The biblical lines of “though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death…” comes to mind. It was bigger trial than I expected, and what I found is that my level of patience is weakened by the holes in my stomach and the ever sweeping wind of time. Like sands in a storm, I was worn to the lowest level I personally have ever been to. I don’t feel much like writing down the specifics to record, as honestly, looking back on the events that led up to my emotional deterioration, they are all very trivial. I could have been more forthcoming with my feelings, but at the time, the variables all seemed to be stacked too high against any possible positive outcome in a confrontation. I don’t even think I would have been able to be rational in the situation.

                Still, with all of that, I returned, elated to see my home. At no time did I truly feel homesick, but seeing my hometown as I drove in seemed to be the cure for what had ailed me. Everything that I was angry about melted away and I felt at peace. I didn’t accomplish much work this week, as the whole two day drive back, all I could think about was getting home and getting back to my hobby routine. Even my battle with apathy could do little to douse my spirits. I sat back in the chair, and I got comfortable.

                The trip was an excuse to spend some money trying to open my mind to the idea of finding something different in life. Seeing what it would be like to really live in a different place. I have taken trips away from home, but I always return for one reason or another. I call it the “Battle of the Shoulds”. I do everything I deem I should be doing based on the risks I asses and the possible outcomes that would come of those risks. I deal with responsibilities based on the idea that me and the future is similar to a completely different person that requires to be waited on hand and foot. Future-me is basically a lazy, incapable, unmotivated idiot.  So present-me has to be very responsible so as not to fail or disappoint future me. Even though I expect that future-me is all of those things aforementioned, he is somehow supposed to be become, in my mind, a fatherly, kind, wise old man. A virtual man on the mountain, tranquil, and trained in the deadliest martial arts, but taught strictly not to use them. His mind is sharper than my own, but, he is a main not up to date with times and has no skill worth paying for. He also desires nothing but to continue his days, unencumbered by past-me’s mistakes, foils, faults, or disabilities. With all this in mind, I take few risks. I follow the path well-trodden so that one day, when all of my responsibilities have been secured, I can take the path not traveled. I want to believe that my happiness is secured by making other travelers journeys easier, always doing what I should to make other’s more comfortable, but the older I have gotten, the more I feel that every time I pass up a path I wanted to take in favor of the one I should take, a little part of my adventurers spirit is shaved off, and I grow that much weaker, leaving future more unable to move down these paths. The “Battle of the Shoulds” is a lose-lose battle if looked at this way. The outcomes being, one, if I follow through and secure all my responsibilities, I may be too weak or too old to do all the other things I allotted for future me to take on. Two, is I take the risks, and while a great adventure will undoubtedly ensue, I let down all of the people who may rely on me for anything, and ultimately I would let down future me and the present me, as I would leave the other part of me, the part that wants to help and be responsible, unfulfilled.  The only way to win the battle is to confront my other demon. Indecision. I don’t have enough information yet to battle this demon, but I also think its unlikely that I will truly ever feel that I have enough to enter into that bout confidently. Being unsure is my greatest weakness. Being executive is my greatest strength. I believe in follow through. But if your heart isn’t in it, what you truly have is a glass fist up against a diamond shield. If you’re lucky, you might land the blow, even force your opponent back, but it’s still glass, and you will ultimately just be buying time.

                For now, I have decided to take the next few days to regroup and try to start up again. I made some good progress before the vacation, so it’s possible I can start again and begin to cross of tasks on the way to making my dreams come true. As with all dreams, they are riddles, quickly recede into the back of your mind, and become only moments of déjà vu. So when you catch a glimpse of them, you have to work hard to break it down, understand what you want, and etch them deep into the back of your eyelids, so that every time you blink, for just less than a second every minute, you can look directly at your goal and make it a reality. 

Complaining

Day thirty-two. I made good progress on the website today. How does one come up with creative projects that truly innovate? They obviously start with a question or problem. But do you have to be discontent with something to ask this all important question? With a story, its so much easier. You don’t even have to have a problem to solve. You can just write. It may not initially paint a clear picture, but given time and effort, you can forge something from nothing. With programming however, it stays structured. You can’t just type out anything. You have to have purpose. It turns out I am weak in both areas. I am not very strong at asking questions or noticing problems when none is presented to me, nor am I able to ramble off words into some kind of coherent story. I can’t even write down my thoughts clearly and concisely without the help of some kind of outline. Which is partially why there is no elegance to these journal posts. Maybe complaining is all I can write down.

No where yet

Day thirty. I wanted to be so much further. I wanted to have something written, but maybe writers really are truly driven to write, and 10 pages or 30 pages are nothing. I look around and I see and read genius. I know, deep down, I have it. I love to tell stories. People might even say that story-telling is my forte. Or maybe I am simply only good at recounting.

Speaking of written genius, I just finished watching The Wire. As a total package, it was enthralling. What they seem to excel at was the ability to set up a series of dramatic traps and turns for their characters. Now, I don’t know many cops, much less from homicide, even less from Baltimore, but I can say that very few of the characters on the side of the law drew me in. I felt that they were probably a little more dramatic than necessary sometimes. On the other hand, the boys on the corners, they seemed, for a lack of a closer word, perfect. I’ve never walked the corners before, but I have met a few that played at playing “the game”. Even had a drive-by happen next door to my house. The gang heads, from season 1 – 5 were truly great characters. Everybody on the block was. They all lived and burned so brightly on screen, it really resonated with me. It actually made me think about what it might be like to be black somewhere else in America, a thought I often laugh to myself about. I laugh because I will never truly be able to experience it, but I will always been seen by others as being black. But, to return to the point, writing, setting up dramatic archs and turns for the characters, making a web and getting your characters caught in it. It is all about the struggle. I need to learn to write a struggle.

Nope

Day twenty-eight. I am coming up on thirty days of trying to find time to write, and I have a total of 5 pages finished from when I started. I haven’t had much time for anything other than research and working. I am still practicing kanji daily, picked up a few manga to translate, and I have been constantly brainstorming, but with the California trip coming up, I am working double time to make sure I make up enough extra time to take a week off.

Nostalgia Equals Regret

Day twenty-six. Nostalgia might be the most depressing feeling I know of. When it hits me, it makes me realize all the things I hoped I would be, all the things reality has stripped away from me, and all the things time changes. I am not the person I ever wanted to be. That is not to say I do not like who I am. I think I am the next best alternative to ALL of the things I wanted to be. If anything, I find myself wanting to write most about nostalgia more than anything else. I think, except for some minor perversions (and I do mean that in a sexual way), I always wanted to be pure in a way that is not realistic. I wanted to be so overcome with life and living that sexual desire was pushed the furthest from my mind. And that a kiss, just a kiss, was the most moving of actions between me and girl I could believe loved me wholly and completely. Even just that much, which might seem to come more easily to some people, I find unfathomably impossible to obtain. I don’t think I will ever truly believe that anyone loves me. Not the way I want to be loved.

Nostalgia to me is much closer to regret, but instead of being upset or angry, I am sad with a smile on my face. I regret, in some ways, ever believing any of it was real. Everything I loved as a child wasn’t real, and every time reality creeps in or crept in, I look away and looked away. I always thought I would suddenly be a natural at something, wake up at 16 and find out I come from a secret kingdom of magic, become friends with a ninja turtle, find out there was a secret staircase in my closet, or learn how to summon the elements with the flick of the wrist. Every year has passed and none of this has come true. And because of that, I can’t really believe in anything but reality. Hard facts. Science. I can’t believe in love. All because I wanted to believe so much in all of those stories. In most of them, love is a key component. I would look at the families in the stories and look back at mine and realize there was almost no similarity. 

Happiness

Day twenty-five. I am having trouble writing this today. I have been thinking a lot about what happiness is. I mean, you can’t really obtain something if you don’t know what it is. If you just lived everyday, would you ever really get it? It just isn’t that simple. Or maybe it is. I try to do things thinking, “Will I regret NOT doing this?” So far, since I started thinking this way, I haven’t regretted anything. And then I think, can the simple things be truly fulfilling? That only seems to be the case when you realize you have more than the have-nots, but that only happens when looking back. If you look forward, you only see all the things that are within your sight, but beyond your reach. But if you work hard, or possibly by luck, you might attain those things. Accomplishments are rewarding. The reward is happiness. Now, maybe it’s a demon or something purer, but there is a whisper in your head, saying, “Aren’t you comfortable? Don’t you have enough? Are you trying to be greedy?” And it keeps you down. Not really unhappy, but just content. A lot of the world would love to be as content as me. So how or why should I ask for more? Because I can? Yea, because you can. Everything in this universe beckons for us to reach beyond our means. So I’ll have to silence weakness, that voice of which I have just named, and press on. It’s not that being greedy is happiness. Moving to the next step is.

Still Can’t Stand

Day twenty-two. Spending a lot of time working this week so I can make enough hours to take a week off at the end of the month. I am really excited to finally see California. I am even thinking of moving there just for a change of scenery. Suddenly, everything seems dreary. I am not feeling too optimistic in any of my endeavors. Life has a strong hold on me. It really isn’t lazy-ness. I wish it was, but life just begs for so many other things. I had a wedding last weekend where I had responsibilities. Not many, but it still begged for a bunch of my time. I can’t wait to get out of this chair. I am still just struggling to move. I need to win the lotto.

A Lapse

Day twenty. The beginning of a new month. I had a slip up this week. Didn’t get any journals or writing done. Best man at a wedding and projects to shore up for clients at the end of the month. Between the last sentence and this one, 3 hours or more have passed. I am planning to hit the regiment hard this month. I really need to get shit done, but I also need to relax. At the end of this month, we are planning on going out to LA. I think I want to move close to the shore. Somewhere else. I love Austin, but I also have a deep desire to change. I am close to finished with my debts. There is so much I want to be, but I still feel strapped to the chair, unable to move. But I am moving my pinky. Today I rest, tomorrow, I try to flex my whole hand. Loosen the straps.

An Evil Pair Of Binoculars

Day sixteen. I continued some work on the website. As usual, I forget how hard it is to do all the things you want to do. If Web Dev was easy, people would get paid much less. Anyway. I have finished one of the harder parts. The registration. But it’s still not ready yet. Dreams are so hard to reach. You can see them with your eyes closed, but open, its so far off. An evil pair of binoculars. Or maybe honest.

Its time to get to writing. Had a lot of ideas, and I might lose them.

Fox Eyed Girl and The Cheater

Day fifteen. Today started with a very weird dream. I met some Japanese kids in the convenient store down the street from my parent’s house. 3 guys, all somewhat faceless, and 2 girls. One of the girls was gorgeous. Staggeringly. I decided to take my chance and blurt out some words in Japanese. The conversation sounded genuine, but for some reason, one of the guys made fun of me for trying to talk to one of the girls in Japanese, while the other two bounced around the store, getting supplies. I stood my ground and replied, he laughed and went to talk with the other guys in the back of the store at the beer cooler. The girl looked back at me, not saying anything. I asked her if she was dating one of them. She laughed and said no. I asked them where they were headed. One of the guys came from the back and interjected, said they were going to the water tower (we don’t have a water tower in my neighborhood) and see if they could take the plunge. A jump from the top into a water reservoir at the bottom. Apparently this was the thing to do. She caught my attention again, not that she ever lost it really, and told me the other girl and her were going to make sure they didn’t really try. They invited me along. Smash cut to the water tower. It wasn’t especially tall, and less of a tower, more of a large cylindrical reservoir with a shimmering blue pool of water off to the side. Smash cut to her body against mine. Smash cut to her lips against mine. And then an impending sense of doom came over me. I realized I had a girlfriend. I was a cheater. I stammered out that I had something to tell her and I would probably have to leave after I did. Just then I noticed she had a hickey or red blotched bruise behind the nape of her neck, camera spinning around to her eyes, which now had a fox-like look to them. The doom felt deeper. She looked me in the eye and said, “You shouldn’t tell me something I don’t want to here. You can’t ever leave me.” My eyes opened, look directly at my girlfriends sleeping face. Lesson learned?

On another note, I got more writing done and have furthered my ideas a bit. I am hoping to get more time to write soon, but with a wedding coming up, life keeps getting in the way.

Where The Sun Don’t Shine

Day twelve. I spent a solid 2 hours in an endoscopy office writing away. It was so much easier to write if your only distractions are a bunch of old people with stomach problems and, oddly, a couple changing their baby in the waiting room. Not that anyone was surprised or even cared. I suppose I was surprised, but then again, I don’t spend much time at the doctor’s office or other places it would be common to see babies, so I really am not sure of what should be or would be considered acceptable.

Either way, I was able to completely concentrate on writing in the waiting room. I knew I needed to concentrate more when I write, but life always gets in the way. I have so many different things to focus on at any one time that it is hard to know when to just ignore it all and write. Even these journals, short as they are, take me about 20 minutes to write. Partially due to censoring (like as to the reason I was at an endoscopy office), partially due to trying to spend time with my girlfriend, as we rarely get to spend any quality time together during the week.

I made it through the week without a drink. Commendable. I don’t think I am an alcoholic by any means, but for some reason, controlling my vices is also one of my goals. I started to learn that they control me to an extent. I love having a drink at the end of the day, or a couple of beers, but superheroes don’t get those hard bodies with a beer at the end of the day. Also, plenty of other vices are much easier to control. The two I can’t are alcohol and chips and salsa. I love them both. And I can’t say why. Back to weekend drinking for a bit until I drop both of them from mainstays in my life.